Dinner with friends...

Posted March 18, 2013 by Christina

 

I am always curious- do you entertain?  Do you often have dinner with friends?  I always see beautiful images of big dinners with wine and wonderful food, beautiful flowers and lovely menus.  Do you do this?  I always want to belong to a great group of people who gather together to share a wonderful long meal but I never seem to make the time to do so.  

If you do gather with friends I have some questions.. 
Do you do it often?
Do you enjoy it?
How do you get people to participate and return the favor?

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10 Comments

Studio One Design

I belong to a women’s stock club. We meet monthly for our partner meeting and then retire for dinner and wine. We rotate the meeting among the various partners. Because summer is so busy with children and vacation, we skip our meeting in June and August and conduct one summer meeting in July. Then we conduct an abbreviated meeting in December and have a champagne brunch instead of dinner.

It is a wonderful experience. We all pull out the fine china, linen napkins and crystal wine glasses. It is a lovely group of ladies and we have a great time learning the stock market and then breaking bread together.

Fri Oct 17 16:24:42 2014

julielorusso@gmail.com

Hi, I don’t think I’ve ever left you a comment before, but I do follow.

I do entertain A LOT. I like to set a pretty table and it’s never the same twice which is part of the fun for me. I love collecting vintage china, stemware, flatware vases etc. So If I have all these beautiful things, I want to use them. I entertain because I like to do it. And the most important thing is knowing from the start that most likely the guests will NOT reciprocate because for them it would probably be stressful. And that’s OK with me, because that’s not why I do it.

A few years ago, a friend decided we should have a dinner club and take turns hosting. I was the first to host and it never happened again— I was a little mad about that because we had a deal and she invited people I didn’t even know to my house. I’ve worked through it though :)

Fri Oct 17 16:24:42 2014

Dawn @ Inspired Living

I love images of large gatherings…ours never looks quite like those. Often times our kids are throwing food around in the background. Do you think that is happening in those pictures??! ;)

We have a group of six (plus kids, now) that get together about once every three months. It used to be more often but life gets busy!

We always rotate homes….each of us likes the chance to host. We just got together this past weekend here at my house!

Fri Oct 17 16:24:42 2014

serena

Getting together with friends for dinner is one of our favorite things. Informal – white platters, a few votive candles scattered, some greenery, simple food and lots of wine:) Many of our friends don’t cook much or don’t feel comfortable cooking for 8 -10 ppl, so it’s mostly at our house, which is fine!

Fri Oct 17 16:24:41 2014

elisa

i absolutely love to throw a dinner party and will go all out, often making food that everyone can participate in making – even harvesting! but having a great space to do this in is crucial. i had this in england and need to create it in canada…soon! i love sharing meals with friends. not long and we will do lots of this out of doors. x elisa

Fri Oct 17 16:24:41 2014

Tricia Rose Rough Linen

I often have dinners with friends but they tend to be small now, three to six people, and quite informal. I used to entertain a lot when I lived in London and I loved that too! I just want my home to to be open to whoever is around.

One thing I notice is that in California everything starts and ends relatively early. Unless we are outside and moon-watching, people leave before midnight.

Fri Oct 17 16:24:41 2014

Anonymous

I try to have several seasonal, themed dinners each year with different sets of friends. It can be a lot of work, but still so much fun to create the table setting, arrange the flowers, come up with a menu and make it! Setting the date usually must be done weeks in advance in order to assure a full table. Unfortunately, reciprocation is rarely realized. I think many people are intimidated by entertaining. Either they don’t like to cook, or are unable to organize themselves to pull it all together.

Fri Oct 17 16:24:41 2014

Caroline

Hey Christina! Yes, I entertain a lot. For me, the only way it’s manageable from a cost and stress perspective is to host events potluck-style. It’s great because that system makes it feasible to do it more frequently AND everyone loves to contribute. People are always proud of the dishes they bring (or buy) and so I haven’t really found any downside to that approach. I have plenty of serveware and we just plate it when it arrives, so it doesn’t even look any less special. I really love setting the scene – as I know you do too – so I typically host for that reason (other people often just find it intimidating and a drag). Ina Garten always has great tips for elegant and simple entertaining too, which I love. You are still brave to attempt all of that with kiddos but I hope this helps! : )

Fri Oct 17 16:24:41 2014

Anonymous

I try never to entertain. It sends me into a paralysis of not knowing what to do. I love being a guest and am a thoughtful contributing member of other people’s get togethers.

Just the other evening my beloved invited the next door neighbors over to enjoy a bonfire and roast marshmallows. I went into spasms of uncertainty. The husband is a Hopi Indian the wife is Mexican what should I serve, what can we talk about, are there enough chairs, is a bonfire legal here, should we invite the neighbors on the other side, what if they don’t like marshmallows? You get the picture.

Thanks for the lovely post. I do have a pool and it would be wonderful if I only had the confidence to go with it.

Ann

Fri Oct 17 16:24:40 2014

Nia Sayers

I don’t think I’ve ever left a comment either! But the longer I follow you the more I feel like we’d be fast friends.

For my 40th birthday last summer, I wanted to have one of those dinner parties that you see in all those magazines and blogs but my expectations were really high. So I let my birthday slip by uncelebrated. A few weeks later I thought that was silly and quickly threw together a delightful outdoor summer dinner party with the group of friends we’ve had since college. And it was perfect (even with muddy, wild kids in the background). I’d like to have those kind of dinners more often. Here is a little post about it. http://bit.ly/ZbrSNy

Fri Oct 17 16:24:40 2014


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